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Five books that changed a statistician

Filed in Books ,Gossip ,Ideas
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There’s a nice article in The Browser in which Statistician and Political Scientist Extraordinaire Andrew Gelman recommends five books. It is definitely worth a read. We learned something about baseball from it and have decided to buy a book on child rearing based on its recommendations. [We already knew the stuff about decision making, bien sur]

Since Andrew is a friend of the blog and  a notorious chart curmudgeon, we thought that for this post we would create a useful infotainmentgraphic, above, with which no reasonable person should find fault. We’ve subbed the Bill James Historical Baseball Almanac for the Annual editions from 1982-1986 because it is supposed to be Five Books, not Nine Books, but Five.

Without further ado, Gelman’s five. Again, don’t miss the article for the explanations.

The New Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract

Judgment under Uncertainty: Heuristics and Biases

How Animals Work

The Honest Rainmaker

How to Talk So Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk

ADDENDUM: With Andrew’s expert advice, we were able to improve the graphic a little:

ADDENDUM 2: I found some even better charts! Click to see full size.


  1. Dave says:

    Ha, I can hear Gelman’s aneurysm from here.

    January 7, 2011 @ 12:44 pm

  2. Aaron K says:

    Excellent visualization.

    January 7, 2011 @ 1:01 pm

  3. Andrew Gelman says:


    Thanks! And it’s good to know that I’m not the only one who uses blogging as a means of procrastination!

    January 10, 2011 @ 10:14 am

  4. dan says:

    Making bad graphs helps one make good graphs … if only.

    January 10, 2011 @ 10:48 am

  5. Best graph ever | Decision Science News says:

    […] This is without doubt the best graph ever, and we have some tough competitors. […]

    July 3, 2011 @ 8:40 am

  6. Isabel says:

    I am interested with “How to Talk So Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk”. I believe this could help me improve my communication to my kids while they were still young. Thanks for sharing.

    baby monitor

    February 20, 2012 @ 3:15 am

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